Concrete or abstract? How little sense this distinction still makes today, one which has shaped many discourses on modern art, is exemplified in the work of Tim Trantenroth. The "abstract" geometric structures we see in his paintings, drawings or murals are anything but inconcrete. Architectural forms are always the basis, window openings, entrances or entire buildings, mostly taken from the geometric vocabulary of brutalist modernism or office architecture defined by large glass surfaces.
Trantenroth's view often focusses on the border between inside and outside, and he repeatedly shows us the optical enveloping effect of positive and negative forms. He also plays with illusionistic effects between two and three dimensionality, thereby calling to mind the geometrically constructed illusions of Op art, especially in his large murals that specifically relate to an architectural context. However, in Trantenroth's work, abstract-illusionistic plays of form always lead into or back to the architectural space, which is thus always regarded as an image. And whether the path leads from architecture to image or vice-versa is a question that renders Trantenroth's art just as systematically undecidable as that of concretization or abstraction. (text: Ludwig Seyfarth)
Tim Trantenroth (1969) studied at the art academies of Münster and Düsseldorf and in 1996 was a master student under conceptual artist and professor Jan Dibbets. The subjects of his paintings and wall paintings are found in objects of historical, political or social significance. They are infused with formal and spatial architectural structures. His works have gained worldwide recognition and have been exhibited in Zurich, Munich, New York and Mexico City, among others. Trantenroth is a professor at the HBK in Essen.